Need help? Contact Support:
Developing a Winning Cost Volume
It’s a given – price is the most important part of the offer. This is especially true in the days when Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) rules, and even when it is a Best Value procurement, the lowest bidder will most likely get the award. Most companies, however, miss the most important elements of process and deliverable for the cost volume, and fail to shine in an area where they could dominate.

Manage the cost volume effectively and maximize your win probability

This course, developed for those who aim to bridge the gap between the cost and technical teams, will help harness the latest best practices and techniques for dominating your competition in the cost volume. It is composed of 50 percent lecture, 40 percent exercises, and 10 percent discussion.

The experts who teach our business development, capture and proposal training are highly experienced currently practicing proposal professionals whose years of successful experience in Government acquisition and training allow them to offer valuable insights to our students. Our instructors can answer tough questions as they come up during the course. They can also tailor the material to their students’ specific challenges, and share their experience based on the most current realities. Check our instructor’s bios.
Developing a winning cost volume
Location: Metro Park North Business Center, 7361 Calhoun Place, Suite 560, Rockville, MD 20855 (check our Visitor Guide for location details, driving directions, nearby hotels and restaurants, and more).
Course completion: By attending this class, you will receive 3 CEUs towards your APMP accreditation, or 3 PDUs towards your PMP. At the end of this course you will get a Certificate of Completion.
Who should attend this course: Proposal department directors, company executives and senior managers, capture managers, proposal managers, business developers, business owners, project personnel.
Course materials: Course workbook, handouts, templates, forms, and checklists.
Professional certification: This is a Core Curriculum Course that provides 2 units (2-days) towards Bid&Proposal Academy certification program for proposal professionals. To learn more about the program or enroll:
Course Curriculum
Day 1 Highlights
Module 1: Cost Proposal Foundations for Non-Finance Professionals
  • Roadmap to winning in cost volumes.
  •  Cost literacy – differences between cost, price, price strategy, and price to win. 
  •  Cost and price components basics. 
  •  Example of pricing to build comfort of non-finance professionals with the cost volume. 
  •  Contract cost principles and procedures. 
  •  Cost accounting standards. 
  •  Cost and pricing data. 
  •  Contract types important to pricing.
Module 2: Important Details About Cost Proposal Evaluation that Impact Cost Proposal Development
  •  Cost proposal evaluation factors, including understanding the difference between pricing strategies for best value and lowest price technically acceptable evaluations.
  •   Evaluation criteria weighting to allocate proposal resources correctly. 
  •  Understanding proposal evaluators to address their key concerns. 
  •   Cost proposal evaluation process, and how adherence to the process figures into cost proposal preparation.
  •  Understanding evaluation intricacies. 
  •  Why the Government doesn’t end up evaluating the price you bid – and how to avoid the pesky plus-ups.
Module 3: Cost proposal Management During Capture
  • Cost team’s involvement during the capture process.
  •  Proposal manager’s involvement into capture from the cost perspective.
  •  Determining different options for a solution. 
  •  Determining your price competitiveness. 
  • Exercise: perform price analysis using a case study.
Module 4: Price to Win (PTW) Development
  • Price to Win (PTW) development process.
  •   Top-level flow to create the win. 
  •   Questions the technical team can help answer for PTW analysis. 
  •   PTW information sources and their use. 
  •   How to integrate competitive analysis with a pricing model. 
  •   How to perform labor rate analysis. 
  •   How to create the win using the PTW. 
  • Exercise: Apply strategies in the case study to arrive at the PTW
Module 5: Managing Cost Volume Development During the Proposal
  •  Resource planning for the proposal to resource your proposals to win, reduce stress, and establish better control over the proposal budget.
  •   Cost volume development process steps. 
  •   Cost inputs into a Bid-No-Bid decision. 
  •   How a proposal manager can facilitate the cost development process and work closely with the cost team. 
  •   Cost volume manager’s role.
  •   Immediate tasks for the proposal manager to oversee while managing the cost team at the proposal start. 
  •   Cost team kickoff tasks checklist.
Day 2 Highlights
Module 6: How to Develop a Highly Persuasive Cost Proposal Narrative
  •  Best practices in developing a cost proposal narrative.
  •   Cost proposal narrative content. 
  •   How to use graphics to depict key pricing themes and discriminators. 
  •   How to write a persuasive cost volume executive summary. 
  • Exercise: develop an annotated outline for a compliant and compelling cost volume.
Module 7: Cost Volume Refinement Techniques
  • Ensuring that cost and technical volumes agree.
  •   Strategies and techniques to tweak the solution to bring down costs.
Module 8: Developing the All-Important Assumptions for Better Price Optics and Modifications After Proposal Award
  • How to develop and collect assumptions and proposal basis that help increase cost-competitiveness.
  •  Usual assumptions.
  •  Additional assumptions that help with price optics.
Module 9: How to Develop a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) for Better Proposal and Cost Controls After Award
  •  How to develop the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS).
  •  PWBS and CWBS. 
  •   Considerations in CWBS development.
  •   How to scrub the CWBS. 
  •   Relationship between CWBS and cost accounts. 
  •   How to develop a WBS Dictionary. 
  • Exercise: Construct a WBS for the contract.
Module 10: How to Develop Basis of Estimate (BOE) to Ghost Competition and Provide Greater Confidence to the Customer in Your Cost Proposal
  •  Developing the dreaded BOEs that are perfect for ghosting low-ballers.
  •   Pros and cons of estimating methods such as analogy, crosschecks, parametric, and the detailed engineering bottom-up method. 
  •  BOE template.
Module 11: Price strategies to Win in the Price Portion of Your Cost Proposal
  • How to sharpen the pencils and apply price strategies appropriate for different contract types.
  •   Price strategies for cost-type, fixed price, and other contracts. 
  •   How to win in LPTA competitions.
Module 12: Final Tips on Winning in the Cost Volume
  • Cost volume reviews.
  •   Final tips on how to not be intimidated by cost proposals even if you are not a numbers person.
Module 13: Summary and Recap
Learning Objectives
The participants will learn and practice skills in:
  • Understanding the basics and principles of creating a cost volume.
  •  Understanding how contract type influences pricing. 
  •  Implementing pricing strategies for best value versus lowest price technically acceptable proposals.
  •  Winning on price. 
  •  Handling cost volumes if someone is not a numbers person. 
  •  Understanding how cost proposal evaluation affects the development process. 
  • Influencing the evaluators to grade your cost volume most favorably. 
  •  Developing a Price-to-Win (PTW) analysis that incorporates competitive analysis, program intelligence, and maximizes win probability (Pwin). 
  •  Using your proposal resources most effectively on the cost volume. 
  •  Applying tools of persuasion for the cost and business volume. 
  •  Refining the cost volume for maximum polish and punch. 
  •  Developing and collecting the best assumptions out there. 
  •  Developing Work Breakdown Structures. 
  •  Using Bases of Estimate to defeat low-ballers.
This course is worth every cent and every minute. For me this is a great conduit to what is out there in terms of Government contracting. A lot of information packed into a day’s class but every slide is useful and relevant. Strongly recommended.”
Summant Kapoor
Radiant Info Tech
“I have two years of experience with proposals while assigned to USSTRATCOM. Being a BD course and not a “capture” course I was surprised by how much I didn’t know about how much information is available for companies. This will make me more aware of how much we need to look in the mirror and square away our own program before submitting proposals to capture business. Excellent course.”
Ron Candiloro
Senior Tactical Systems Analyst
Tactical Air Support, Inc.
“Being new to the industry, this course has allowed me to learn the process, understand the process, and have a clear road map what to do to be successful. I will return for advanced materials and recommend this service to anyone with gaps in their business structure or strategy.”
Emilio Lopez
Vice President
Developing a Winning Cost Volume
For team discounts please change quantity of attendees at the checkout and click “Recalculate” to get the discount. Register 3 weeks before class date and receive $100 off per attendee as an EARLYBIRD discount!
$1390 per one attendee ($1290 if registered 3 weeks before class date).
$1250 per attendee when registering a team of 3 or more ($1150 if registered 3 weeks before class date), discounts apply at the checkout.
$1390 per one attendee
$1250 per attendee when registering a team of 3 or more
Register for an Upcoming Class
Seating is limited. Do not delay registering.
Cancellations and rescheduling policy: Cancellation notification must be received 10 business days prior to the training date. Upon notification, your registration fee will be refunded less a $100 non-refundable processing fee. Any cancellations beyond the 10 business days are non-refundable, but the course fee can be applied towards another training course, webinar, or an OST Global Solutions training product. No refunds will be made for the cancellation of a rescheduled course. Attendee substitutions may be made at any time. Payment must be received prior to the course date. No-shows are liable for the full class fee.
For additional questions please call 301-384-3350 during normal business hours. If you’d like to pay by invoice please send an email to (NOTE: the payment must be received prior to the course start date).
Would you like to take this class remotely? We have webcasting capability. Please send us an email at if you’d like to attend a class via live webcast. The date and time will be the same as the classroom training.
Copyright 2017 All Rights Reserved.